Defining Ideas

Subscribe to receive Defining Ideas. Subscribe »

Explore Research

Filter By:




Enter comma-separated IDs of authors
Enter comma-separated IDs of contributors

Support the Hoover Institution

Join the Hoover Institution's community of supporters in advancing ideas defining a free society.

Support Hoover

California Knifes The Gig Economy

by Richard A. Epsteinvia Defining Ideas
Tuesday, September 17, 2019

Wrecking the gig economy.

The Ability Of Markets

by Richard A. Epsteinvia Defining Ideas
Monday, September 9, 2019

Disabled workers benefit more from a strong economy than from the ADA.

Donald Trump Vs. Adam Smith

by David R. Hendersonvia Defining Ideas
Friday, September 6, 2019

Should We Worry About the American Trade Deficit?

Budget Matters: The Unusual Suspects

by Daniel Heilvia Defining Ideas
Thursday, September 5, 2019

It seems every month, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) releases another report showing sharp increases in the federal debt. In June, CBO released its annual Long-Term Budget Outlook showing debt would pass 100% of GDP in 2034 and hit 144% in 2049. And, just last month, CBO’s updated 10-year budget forecasts showed even larger deficits than previously predicted.

Trump’s Trade Travesty

by Richard A. Epsteinvia Defining Ideas
Monday, September 2, 2019

The President should not blame “weak companies” or the Fed for declining economic growth.

What Is The Purpose Of A Corporation?

by Richard A. Epstein quoting Edward Paul Lazear, Milton Friedmanvia Defining Ideas
Monday, August 26, 2019

The Business Roundtable errs in prioritizing social responsibility over shareholder value.

A Carbon Tax Is Not A Slam Dunk

by David R. Henderson mentioning John H. Cochrane, George P. Shultzvia Defining Ideas
Tuesday, August 20, 2019

On Pigou, Pinatubo, cow farts and geo-engineering

Reservation Capitalism

by Terry Anderson, Wendy Purnellvia Defining Ideas
Thursday, August 15, 2019

Lance Morgan is the CEO of Ho-Chunk, Inc., a $100 million tribal economic development corporation that employs nearly 400 people. Tribal leaders and entrepreneurs such as Morgan are part of an economic civil rights movement emerging in indigenous communities around the world. The Winnebago Tribe of Nebraska, which owns Ho-Chunk, Inc., started with a casino, then diversified to earn the revenue needed to build the necessary infrastructure for prosperous tribal economies. 

Israeli Lessons For Mass Shootings

by Richard A. Epsteinvia Defining Ideas
Monday, August 12, 2019

Choosing the proper mix of preventive measures.

Socialism Has Failed. Period.

by David R. Hendersonvia Defining Ideas
Wednesday, August 7, 2019

Two economists journey through Socialist lands—and tell us what they see. 


The Libertarian

Richard Epstein
Richard Epstein presents his classically libertarian perspective on national developments in public policy and the law. The Libertarian archives »


Follow Epstein on Twitter

The Caravan

Visit the Caravan, a periodic symposium on the contemporary dilemnas of the greater Middle East.

With its distinct intellectual assets and ongoing programs of policy-oriented research, the Hoover Institution at Stanford University is a uniquely distinguished contributor to the marketplace of ideas.

Defining Ideas builds on the strength of Hoover’s research: publishing on-line the original work of Hoover fellows and affiliated scholars, as well as that of task force and working group members, whose scholarship lies within the fields of economics, history, law, and political science.

This online journal is the result of our concerted efforts to be part of America’s most important conversations, conveying to the public and to lawmakers an in-depth understanding of key public policy issues. Crucial to this effort is a commitment to develop enduring solutions for the challenges that face our nation and our world—in effect, to advance ideas defining a free society.

Throughout history, ideas have had consequences for the human condition, both beneficial and detrimental. The Hoover Institution’s working groups have been convened to promote ideas that advance freedom, peace, and prosperity. Defining Ideas is intended to illuminate the work of these groups.



While Defining Ideas welcomes comments from readers, we exercise the right to monitor the comments we receive. We will not publish comments that include obscenities, swear-words and vulgarisms; ad hominem attacks; racist expression; rudeness or discourtesy; violations of copyright; or any other transgression of taste or civility that the editors deem unpublishable on a Hoover Institution Web site. We reserve the right, also, to close down comments on a particular essay if the editors believe we have reached "saturation" point. 


The opinions expressed in Defining Ideas are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the Hoover Institution or Stanford University.